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10 tips for airport parking

Updated on July 5, 2011

Airport parking tips from a regular traveller

  1. Don’t leave it too late to book
    Book your airport parking as soon as you book your holiday. Booking early not only ensures you get a space, it also secures you the cheapest airport parking price – much cheaper than the gate price paid when turning up on the day without booking in advance.
  2. Don’t leave your house keys with your car keys
    If your parking company requires you to leave your keys to your car, make sure you only leave your car key and not your house keys too.
  3. Don’t leave too late
    Leave plenty of time to get to the car park, particularly if you are parking off-airport as you will need to take the shuttle bus to the airport. Leaving too little time to get to the airport could mean that you risk missing your flight in the event of a traffic jam, breakdown or road accident.
  4. Get directions
    If you are using off-airport parking make sure you know where you are going. Get directions from the company’s website before leaving, plan your route and use sat nav or a map.
  5. Check your sports equipment will be accepted on the shuttle bus
    If you are travelling with large sports equipment check that it will fit in the shuttle bus before you book. Some companies will not accept snowboards, skis and other large equipment, so call before you book.
  6. Check acceptable vehicles
    If you are using a commercial vehicle or have a trailer, check that it can be accommodated in the car park before booking.
  7. Check your car before your holiday
    Make sure your vehicle is road worthy – if you are using a meet and greet parking service, the company is well within its rights to refuse to take your car if they deem it unsafe to drive.
  8. Is your car legal?
    Make sure your car is legal – up-to-date tax disc, current mot – similarly, if your car doesn’t have a tax disc to cover the entire period of your holiday, including return date, the company will refuse to take your car as they will be breaking the law driving an untaxed vehicle.
  9. Correct contact details
    Ensure your parking company has your correct contact information, such as mobile number, in order to contact you for drop off and collection.
  10. Double check dates
    If you are flying overnight, check that your parking company has the correct date of your return. If your flight takes off on one day and lands the next it can be easy to give the parking company the date of your flight and not the date of your arrival, so always check, otherwise, if you are using a valet parking and you've mixed up your dates you face an excess charge for returning your car to the airport twice!


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